Last month I wrote about the lack of bluefin tuna showing up. Now all I can say is that they disappeared as suddenly as they arrived. Those lucky few anglers who did manage to wrestle with these monster fish are amongst an exclusive club this year.
That’s not to say it’s done and dusted though. Be ready to chuck a sickie at a moment’s notice and keep your finger on the pulse and your ear to the ground for the faintest talk about when and where they start to chew again. One of the greatest emerging sources for fishing related news is Facebook, so make sure you have some connections through the fishing community to keep abreast of what’s going on.
In closer there have still been good numbers of snapper showing up but the howling westerly winds and big seas have been a great hindrance to any keen fisho. You really have to pick your days or try to snare a mid-week arvo off work, as that has been when the best weather has occurred. Float baiting seems to be the way to go at the moment with two locals snaring their PBs at 78cm and 81.5cm in the same session.
There are still some kingfish being boated around the cliffs at the Sideboards and Drum and Drumsticks. Livies are the go at this time of year, and you can pick some up on the way out just off Murrays boat ramp.
Whilst on the topic of livies there have been great numbers of squid showing in this location. Drifting a jig out the back whilst casting one forward is the best way to get a few squid quickly.
All reports from the Basin are saying that there have been a great number of bream out deep between Basin View and the islands, with blades and plastics being the go-to methods. Keep an eye on your sounder for schooling fish and use either a slow lift or a double hop to get the bite. If you’re not too confident on fishing deep you can still target the edges. You might not get the numbers that you would deeper, but you should find quality with reports of 1kg+ bream being caught in these areas.
In the river it’s the start of the greatest time of the year… the opening of the NSW bass season! The beginning of the season is always a little tough, with rainfall being a huge influence on the location and the feeding pattern of the fish. The easiest way is to start at the Grotto and work your way up the alternating cliff faces of the river. At this time of year surface fishing will be very quiet, so focus your efforts on hopping plastics down the rock faces. I’ve had good success with the Madeye Paddle Prawns. Alternatively you can use deep diving hardbodies like the Jackall Chubby or Cranka Cranks.
The Shoalhaven area has some great freshwater impoundments in the way of Danjera (Yalwal) and Tallowa (Kangaroo Valley) dams that are both stocked with Australian bass. These dams have been known to produce trophy fish but they do not allow combustion engines, with Danjera being paddle (kayak/canoe) or electric propelled boat friendly and Tallowa being paddle only.
At this time of the year the fish should still be down deep. A very popular method in the tournament scene for targeting these guys when they are down low is by using ice jigs worked vertically through the schooled-up fish that can be seen on your sounder.
That’s it for another month, good times and tight lines!Reads: 510